The Wedding Photographer’s Checklist for a Productive Off-Season

November 21, 2017


jihae watson

The Wedding Photographer's Checklist for a Productive Off-Season

As the busy wedding season comes to an end and your to-do list starts to dwindle, it is time to take a deep breath – you made it to the off-season! And although your shooting schedule might not be as packed during the slower months of the year, there are several ways to stay productive. We reached out to ShootDotEdit to find out what you can focus on during the off-season for your photography business.


At ShootDotEdit, not only do we provide photo editing services to professional photographers, we also love to share valuable resources geared toward business growth. The off-season is the time where things start to slow down and you have a bit more time to focus on the tasks that help your business run efficiently, or ones that may need additional optimizations. With so many aspects of your business to focus on, how can you know where to start? Here is a checklist of areas of your photography business you can focus on to have your most productive off-season yet.

  1. Create a Scalable Workflow

One of the most time-consuming areas of your business is your post-wedding workflow. This includes working on your images and fulfilling final product requests. When you set up a scalable workflow, you can optimize the time spent on non profit-generating tasks and dedicate it to the other areas of your business. Use these tips to get set up when things are slower so you can fly when things are busy.

  • Develop a culling workflow
  • Learn and use Lightroom
  • Outsource to specialists to eliminate hours from your workflow


  1. Build a Strong Marketing Plan

As an integral part of your photography business, a strong marketing plan can help you reach and book ideal clients. Determine who your ideal client is and create a marketing plan targeted to attract them. This way, you can attract ideal clients who are a perfect fit for your brand and help you grow your photography business. If you plan to book 20 weddings in the coming year, an ideal scenario is to book ideal clients in every slot.

  • Create constant online interaction
  • Update your website and blog
  • Send gifts to clients
  • Connect with vendors
  • Create sample albums
  1. Maximize Social Media

With billions of followers on multiple platforms, social media plays a large role in growing your photography business. With new social platforms constantly developing and changing, it can be challenging to know the best platforms to use to share your images and attract ideal clients. Through social media, specifically Facebook and Instagram, there are several opportunities to build strong relationships with clients and vendors.

  • Create a hashtag strategy
  • Share past wedding photos
  • Maximize Instagram Stories
  • Utilize Instagram shortcuts
  • Study Instagram statistics
  • Increase Facebook reach
  • Tag clients and vendors
  1. Implement Systems and Processes

As a wedding photographer, your systems are the backbone of your business. Most importantly, they help you to provide the same amazing experience to each of your clients as efficiently as possible. The off-season is the time to analyze your systems to make sure they hold up under pressure. You can identify areas that caused problems when you were busiest and then work to smooth them out now.

  • Utilize Email Templates
  • Develop consistent workflows
  • Simplify invoicing processes
  • Place priority on the most important tasks


  1. Strengthen your SEO

With the constant changes in technology, one thing is for sure: the ability to be found online is so important for your photography business. How your website ranks and shows up in a search engine, such as Google, is essential to the success and longevity of your business. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is both an art and a science. While it is always changing, understanding the basics can help you climb the rankings and get the leg up on your competitors.

  • Set up SEO basics for your website
  • Create a site map
  • Build a keyword strategy
  • Blog consistently
  • Track your progress

While the information listed above can help you to have a productive off-season that recharges your business, every photography business differs. Think about the tasks that slowed you down the most during busy season and focus on those. What was it that caused you the most pain or the things you avoided until the last minute? Create your own checklist of 8-10 items you know you must do this off-season. Before you know it, the busy wedding season will be here again. And for additional ways to update your photography business and book more weddings next year, take a look at our comprehensive list.

All images used with permission by Kim Payant Photography


Thanks so much to our friends at Shoot Dot Edit for this fantastic guest post! We hope this encourages you to stay productive, but also enjoy your break in your off-season!

Hi! I'm Jihae Watson! I was born in Seoul, grew up in Toronto, Ontario and now live in Gilbert, Arizona. I love all three cities so very much as I have plenty of family, and favorite restaurants in all three locations.

I am married to a stud named Chris, and we have four fantastic kids. Together we love being a foster family, and we presently have the sweetest little foster babe.

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